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I'm getting soft in my old age


Cooter

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Out Sat night and had a nice doe come into my food plot. I'm thinking more veni for the freezer when her fawn shows up. I'll say it was because the fawn was small for this time of year or 10 other different excuses but bottom line is I watched her for 15 minutes and couldn't bring myself to shoot her. Back in the day I wouldn't have thought twice....old age I tell ya smirk.gif

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Careful Cooter, pretty soon you will only hunt from ground blinds because you don't want to hurt the other trees feelings grin.gif

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I have done the same this year. Had a doe and a fawn in the beans back in September and didn't do anything. Couple of Saturday's ago 3 does and a fawn come down the trail and I just watch them walk on by. I just don't have that killer instinct I used to have. With all that said I did arrow a doe last week. She was by herself.

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I want meat for the freezer as bad as the next guy... But years ago, I shot a doe with a fawn... The fawn stuck around while I gutted and it just tore my heart out! So, now I do my best to wait till later in the season when the mother kicks the little one out.. or at least the fawns are a little more independant... However, I do feel that if a doe is taken now.. more than likely the fawn will have no problem adapting and surviving.

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Three weeks ago I had a nice fat doe and her two small fawns bed down about 6 yards from me. Watched them for 40 minutes. Couldn't bring myself to take the doe with the little one's there, they just looked too young to survive on their own...........

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Finally, some SPORTSMEN! You guys are not soft, you just have it figured out. It's not about killing, it's about hunting. People with the "If it's brown, it's down" mentallity don't have a clue! I'm not saying it's bad to shoot does, I'm just saying being out there is the purpose, shooting a deer is the bonus. Does and fawns are fun to watch and good action for kids and beginners. Also good action later in the season. Anyhow, have a great season and look forward to big buck photo's.

FWT

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Right on FWT its not all about unloading on everything that moves, that is what gives hunters a bad rep. I typically shoot does later in the season because its good managment until I see a real nice buck. Two years ago I had a doe bed down 20 feet from me...she came in kicked around a bit and then layed down not even knowing I was there I just watched her for probably 30 min to an hour before a wounded fork came barreling through the brush that I had to take. The beauty of nature is wonderful, and some of my best moments afield aren't shooting, but watching that doe gracefully trot through the woods, or watching mallards cupped with the landing gear down. If all we wanted to do as sportsman is shoot stuff, the range is open and there is no sitting for hours freezing your butt off. grin.gif

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Amen FWT! I'm so sick of people with the "kill makes the hunt" attitude. As far as I'm concerned if you hunt just so you can say you shot X amount of something, you should stick to clay pigeons or targets. For a true sportsman, a kill is just the icing on the cake. For me killing something is 10% of my overall experience, the other 90% is all about the experience. Another thing, I wouldn't want to associate with a person who doesn't feel a little remorse at the taking of an animal or fish's life. As Ted Nugent would say, "Say a prayer for the wild things next time you make a kill."

Brian

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Right on Cooter. I like this thread a lot, and I am going to flag it and make sure I read it before I head up north on Friday, Nov 2nd.

Great stuff fellas. Good luck and be safe this year.

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I totally agree. It's not necessarily what's in the bag at the end of the day. It's getting out in the field and having a great time with friends and family. I learned early that it's not about bringing home a limit so much as it's about having a good time. That's an important lesson that I will be passing down to my kids as well.

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So, if we shoot a doe on the first day of the season we are not sportsmen? If we shoot a small deer we give hunters a bad name?

It depends on the circumstance for me. My main goal in hunting is the fun and the outdoors and to make sure all the young and older members of the party get a deer. If my 13-year-old niece shoots a fawn, she is not a sportsman?

Well, I guess I am not a sportsman then. If I see a nice doe on opening morning, it is down. I guess I am a crazy hunter that doesn't know what he is doing.

Or, I can make up other things...like true sportsmen don't used scopes...that is cheating. Or something like that.

We hunt on private land where the deer are plentiful. We shoot more does than bucks typically and no more than we can eat. Look down your nose at us if we want, but it is a huge family event and tradition for us and there is nothing wrong with it. If the way we hunt is not to the code of the "sportsmen", then I don't want to be one.

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I don't think they are saying that you are a non sportsman. Some people like to fill the freezer, some people have hunted for many years and are looking for the buck of a lifetime. Whether it is a trophy or meat in the freezer, to each his own.

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Quote:

So, if we shoot a doe on the first day of the season we are not sportsmen? If we shoot a small deer we give hunters a bad name?


Hammer- I don't beleive that was the point anyone was trying to convey....You can shoot does opening morning and, you defineatly are a sportsman because that is good managment. My hunting party sounds a lot like yours, everyone goes out and trys to harvest a deer...usually a doe of 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 years is common. We hunt for meat, the commraderie, and everyone wants a chance at that big buck. And if a younger hunter takes a young deer, I think thats fine, although would try to wait out this years fawn. Anyway, back to the whole sportsman thing.....the general point of what was being said was a sportsman appreciates the expierience of the hunt, they are happy if they don't shoot all day, they take in the sights and sounds that make the expierience. They are not out there to shoot anything that moves, and sometimes enjoy just observing wildlife without pulling the triger on it, for truely being emersed in nature is a amazing expierience that fills the soul. I believe there are some people that truely haven't taken the time to take this all in. If I get a deer opening morning I still sit the stand as long as I am there, this oprotunity only comes a short time out of the year.

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Well, sorry if I jumped to conclusions...but it sure sounded like does are only for beginners and late season takes. If you take them before that, you are not a sportsman. And, if you are an adult and take a fawn the first day...OMG!

Last year I shot a doe and her fawn on the second morning of hunting. The next weekend, I saw another doe and fawn, but let these go by as it was bucks only then for me. If our party wasn't successful the first weekend, I would have taken both of them too. Usually our season is only two days. Lately (last year and this year), we have a week...although I only go on the weekends.

I hear the quote "brown its down" a lot. Well, for me the first days of the hunt it COULD be down if its brown. It all depends on the circumstance.

Two years ago my cousin (in his late 30s) shot two fawns the first day of the hunt. When he registered them, one guy came up and told him he was not a sportsman. There was a Game Warden there, and he told my cousin that "we need more hunters like you, the population is too high." He was then trying to talk him into getting a management permit. My cousin didn't though, as he felt that was enough deer meat.

If there was few deer and "doe permits", buck only is fine. If you chose to hunt only big bucks, that is fine too. Just because I or any other adult takes a small deer the first day of the season does not mean we don't appreciate the hunt and the outdoors and are not sportsmen.

Maybe I am not reading what people are saying or not understanding what is being sad. I was not trying to offend anyone or start an arguement. I was just trying to make a point. If I offended anyone, I am sorry. But you have to understand that I felt offended by some comments.

It is great that Cooter appreciated the deer and decided not to take them. Good for him! Been there, done that. But, would I have thought less of him if he decided to take them both (fawn too), no.

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Hammer...I think the overall theme of the thread is just one of "appreciation of the hunt" and not focusing on the physical act of killing something. We were just acknowledging that sometimes it can be morally difficult to shoot a doe/fawns when actually observing them interacting together in nature.

Just because a guy shoots a doe or a fawn definitely does NOT make him less of a sportsman. I shot a doe last year. But if a guy can shoot a doe who is laying peacefully next to her fawns (still, not a "wrong" thing to do) and the fawns are bleating for their mother, and that doesn't tug on his heart-strings at least a LITTLE bit, I just think that's a little sad.

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